Petition does not oppose protecting green field sites

MAY we respond to a political leaflet written by Coun Michael McIntyre and which has been distributed in the Whitley Bay area.

We are Holystone Action Group, known as HAG. We are a residents’ group and we do not align to any political party.

The leaflet states that HAG is ‘… a group which is proposing that 5,000 new houses be built between Rake Lane, Murton, Monkseaton and Earsdon.’

We have never made such a proposal.

It further states there is a ‘… petition from HAG which opposes the mayor’s proposals to protect green field sites.’

Our petition does nothing of the sort.

It asks – very clearly – for four specific sites to be given ‘green belt’ status to protect them from development.

It is the council’s Core Strategy Preferred Options (CSPO) proposals – published a full year after the mayor took office and when Coun McIntyre was a member of the cabinet – which identifies the site to which he refers as the most sustainable green field site in the borough and capable of having not just 5,000 but in excess of 10,000 homes built on it.

The CSPO proposals as they stand would see many green field sites in North Tyneside, including wildlife corridors which feed the Rising Sun Country Park, destroyed, and this is what our group is against.

Our position is as follows: Please do not build on green field sites, use brown field sites first.

When all brown field site options have been exhausted, and only then, consider green field, and if it gets to that point, use the ones the council itself identifies as the most sustainable.

With 3,400 outstanding planning permissions and a net figure of just 200 new homes in the last three years, there is no need to build 5,000 homes anywhere – people aren’t buying.

It is interesting the councillor publishes this leaflet only days before the mayor and cabinet are due to discuss the petition.

We have tried very hard to instigate dialogue with the councillor and mayor, but to no avail.

We have tried to talk to all councillors of all parties, and have tried to keep an apolitical stance throughout as this, to us, is not about politics but it is about protecting green spaces in North Tyneside for the benefit of future generations.

For details of the sites we have asked in the petition to be protected, visit our website:

We hope this makes our position clear and sets the record straight.